Still Own Your Childhood Toys? They Could Be Worth Big Bucks!
Do you still have your childhood toys packed in a box in the corner of your attic? It’s time to open it up and see if you have nostalgic toys to pass down to new generations or a treasure chest filled with valuable collectibles. That’s right — many toys from your childhood are now worth hundreds or even thousands of dollars.
Which toys are worth the most? It depends on a lot of factors, starting with collector appeal. Start by checking out this list of 30 childhood toys you might still own that could be worth a small fortune.
Happy Meal Toys, $100
You’re not alone if you loved going to McDonald’s when you were a kid just to get a Happy Meal toy. The toys were free with the purchase of the meal, and it was always a special treat and a surprise. Which toy would you get next?
In the 1990s, you most likely asked your parents to buy you a Skip-It. The toy was made famous by a children’s commercial filmed at Ravinia Elementary School in Highland Park, Illinois. The apparatus attached to kids’ ankles for easy swinging and skipping, and it seemed like the coolest invention ever.
Everyone seemed to own a Lite-Brite in the '70s, ‘80s and ‘90s. It was a magical toy with bright lights that allowed you to create colorful designs. Time Magazine listed the Lite-Brite as one of the top 100 toys of all time. Originally released in 1967, it entertained kids for hours.
Moon Shoes, $200
These shoes were questionable in the ‘70s, and they’re still questionable today. First introduced in the '50s, the shoes were supposed to make you feel like you were walking on the Moon. They were popular well into the '90s, although no one is quite sure why.
You were considered one of the "cool kids" if you owned a View-Master. First introduced in 1939, children (and adults) could look through the binocular-like device to view novelty photos, animated images and various other images.
Strawberry Shortcake Dolls, $550
Every little girl wanted to own a Strawberry Shortcake doll. The adorable 6-year-old, red-headed protagonist of The World of Strawberry Shortcake inspired many television shows, films, toys, merchandise and more. First introduced in 1979 by Muriel Fahrion, the character spawned an entire franchise.
Super Soaker, $600
Who didn’t love having water gun fights? It was the best way to spend a hot summer day. While every water gun was cool, the Super Soaker was the one everyone wanted to own. The water gun operated on its own, using pressurized air to shoot a stream of water at any victim in close proximity. Its popularity generated more than $1 billion in sales.
Toy Story Dolls, $700
If you grew up in the ‘90s, you were probably a fan of Toy Story. You grew up watching the Pixar animated film and fell in love with the characters. Woody was your hero, and you wanted to go to infinity and beyond with Buzz Lightyear. Because you were a fan, you probably owned Toy Story dolls.
Nintendo 64 Games, $750
Nintendo 64 games can be worth up to $750, depending on the title. Mario Kart 64 is one of the most in-demand cartridges. However, it must be in mint condition and in an unopened box to command this price. If you never opened yours, you can get a nice return on your investment. (But how in the world did you resist playing it?)
Jurassic Park Toys, $900
In 1993, one of the biggest movie hits of all time, Jurassic Park, set a new standard for Hollywood blockbusters. After the movie, available merchandise included T-shirts, hats, mugs and lots of toys. Dinosaur action figures and human character dolls became "hot" items and are now in demand with collectors.
Everyone wanted to own a Furby in the 1990s. The fuzzy electronic critters (resembling a large hamster or owl) were the absolute "must have" item for ‘90s kids, even if their parents didn’t understand the fascination. Every generation has an odd trend — for the ‘90s, it was Furby.
My Little Pony Toys, $900
In the ‘80s, more than 150 million My Little Pony dolls and toys were sold in the United States. Introduced in 1982, the franchise featured magical, colorful ponies with flowing manes. There was a pony for every kid, and the toys managed to capture the hearts of every child.
Do you remember Pogs? They weren’t the most popular childhood toy on our list, but they were still a fun game for kids in the mid-1990s and could be worth big bucks today. Pogs featured popular television and movie characters as well as professional athletes and other celebrities.
Game Boy, $750-$1,500
Do you remember playing video games on a Game Boy? If you’re a ‘90s kid, you most likely still have a Game Boy somewhere in your house. Created in 1989, the Game Boy was the most popular handheld game console, and every kid begged their parents to buy one.
Power Rangers, $1,400
Who was the best Power Ranger — Yellow or Red? Pink or Blue? Everyone had their favorite Power Ranger, and they wanted to own action figures from the popular television show. About $350 million-worth of Power Rangers toys were sold in 1994, making the toys a part of a pop culture phenomenon.
Skeletor Action Figure, $1,600
If you grew up in the ‘80s, you remember the Masters of the Universe franchise. Maybe you were even a fan of the 1987 movie. Everyone loved the protagonist He-Man, but his action figure surprisingly isn’t worth that much money today, probably because they made a ton of them. Instead, it’s his arch-nemesis, Skeletor, that’s worth the big bucks.
Teddy Ruxpin, $1,600
In the ‘80s, if your parents couldn’t read a bedtime story to you, you were in luck. Teddy Ruxpin was available to read you a story using pre-recorded cassette tapes. The cuddly teddy bear, released in 1985, was discontinued in 1987, mostly due to its expensive price tag. The original Teddy Ruxpin cost the equivalent of $159 in 2019.
Polly Pocket, $1,900
Every young girl owned a Polly Pocket playset in the ‘80s and ‘90s. The tiny, portable doll sets were available in a variety of themes. You could play with mermaids, princesses and more. If you managed to keep track of every piece of your Polly Pocket sets (yes, every piece), you could earn a lot of money.
Transformers Action Figures, $2,000
Transformers first emerged as a popular franchise in 1984, with an animated television series and popular comic book collection. Due to the popularity, the franchise’s action figures sold very well, especially the main hero, Optimus Prime. Today, the franchise’s modern action figures are still sold at many stores.
Who didn’t own a Playmobil set when they were a kid? The toys were produced in themed series, as well as individual special figures and playsets. Famous in the ‘70s, the toys have now become a cult obsession for adults who want to revisit their childhood.
LEGO Trains, $1,500-$3,000
When LEGO was released in 1949, people probably didn’t think the toys would be a success. However, the toys capture children’s imaginations by allowing them to create whatever they want. In 2019, the LEGO train set is a rare collectible. Children could build a train station, complete it with an electric train. How cool is that?
Cabbage Patch Kids Dolls, $3,000
First released in 1978, every little girl wanted to own a Cabbage Patch Kid doll. Most likely, they owned multiple dolls. The round-faced, soft-sculpted doll expanded its popularity well into the ‘80s and ‘90s. Toy collector Laurie Anderson Dowell said, "One didn’t buy a Cabbage Patch doll. One ‘adopted’ it. Hence, you were paying an adoption fee."
Every decade, there's at least one toy that really captures the essence of those 10 years. In the ‘90s, this was the Tamagotchi device. The handheld, virtual pets required incessant care and attention — no parents to do it for you! — to stay alive. Every kid wanted to own a Tamagotchi.
Easy-Bake Oven, $4,000
An Easy-Bake Oven is the quintessential vintage childhood toy. In 1963, every kid begged for an Easy-Bake Oven for Christmas. The toy was modeled after ‘60s kitchens and was available in either light yellow, green or teal colors. Yes, it might seem like a bizarre idea to "bake" brownies with a lightbulb, but kids loved pretending they were cooking in their own kitchen.
Garbage Pail Kids, $4,000
Just in case you don’t remember them, Garbage Pail Kids were collectible sticker cards in the ‘80s. The cards featured child characters, usually depicting them doing something super-gross. However, the images were always presented in a comical way — even if they were odd and abnormal. Many elementary schools banned the cards, calling them "distractions."
Boba Fett Action Figure, $5,000
Any original action figure from the Star Wars franchise is worth a lot of money, but none of them are as valuable as a rare Boba Fett action figure. The villain figure was a mail-order promotion that fired a missile from his backpack. Toy collector Laurie Anderson Dowell commented, "This was deemed unsafe, so this version wasn’t released (in stores)."
Beanie Babies, $5,000
Do you remember Beanie Babies? Of course, you do. The adorable toys resembled all kinds of animals and creatures. Kids had to collect them all, much to their parents’ dismay. The Beanie Baby craze might have been obnoxious for some people, but now you can resell some of the oldest toys for a large profit.
American Girl Dolls, $5,000
What young girl didn’t want an American Girl doll? The original, historical dolls discontinue long ago — Kirsten, Molly, Samantha and Felicity — are worth thousands of dollars. The Samantha doll has sold for as much as $4,200 at auction. A mint condition Molly McEntire doll sold for $5,000.
Harry Potter Books, $6,500
Toys aren’t the only childhood items worth a lot of money to collectors. You can also sell your old children’s books, including the original, first-print editions of the popular Harry Potter book series. A first edition copy of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone is worth about $6,500.
Where the Wild Things Are Book, $25,000
Everyone has a favorite children’s book. Whether you enjoyed the Dr. Seuss books or Clifford the Big Red Dog, childhood classics taught you how to read. None of the children’s books are as valuable as the original copies of Where the Wild Things Are. A 1963 first edition, signed copy (with Maurice Sendak’s autograph) of the beloved children’s classic sold in 2012 for $25,000.